Heyyyyyy! How’s it going? This South Carolina rain (the norm these days) is really making me miss that Miami sunshine and 80 degree weather. So, I figured I’d be better late then never and write about our LONG (yet it really just flew by) weekend competing in Miami.
But before I jump into that. I know I am pretty slack about this blog thing these days. The last post I did was over a month ago about competing at The CrossFit Mayhem in Cookeville, TN. In case you didn’t know, some pretty devastating storms and tornadoes ripped through the town several nights ago. The pictures and videos I’ve seen of the mess is sad. People I know have been affected and know people who have lost everything from their homes to even their lives. There really is something special about Cookeville, TN. I felt that love both times I’ve been there – especially meeting so many people when I competed there. I know there is A LOT going on in the world right now, and the big talk is about the corona virus, but if you get a minute, check this out. If you are into CrossFit, you probably have at least one CF Mayhem shirt. This is a great way to get a shirt and help some people do some good.
Ok, moving on to WZA! Wow. I don’t even know where to start. I had so much fun. I legit did the qualifiers awhile back just for fun. I’m pretty sure when I got back from vacay in Jamaica the week before, I said, “ok, I’m retired from this competing thing.” Whatever. I ended up qualifying for the elite division. To me, this was a huge honor. I’m somewhere in year 32 of my life. I’m not very young. The older I get, the more I recognize that I won’t ALWAYS be able to take part in cool experiences like this SO, better live it up while I can. Ya know what I mean? The elite roster at WZA is always a pretty stacked one, so even just to compete side by side with those girls was something I was really looking forward to.
I worked really hard leading up to the open, through the open, after the open, before Mayhem, after Mayhem, and before this. I felt like a failure a lot because I’ve really been focusing on everything I’m not great at. BUT at the same time, I have grown to not take myself so seriously, and be thankful for ALL that I do have in life. Therefore, I can count the breakdowns on less than one hand from when I didn’t get my way in a workout or training session.
All that to say, I mentally felt GREAT going into Wodapalooza. But I’m maybe a little embarrassed to admit that I was telling people not to expect big things from me – only because of the stacked playing field – but still…I had a goal to finish top 30 out of 40 (some girls dropped out last min, so I think there were like 36 girls competing). When I say “mentally great”, I just feel like I was at a place where I was like, “hey, I’ve worked really hard for this. I’m going to do my best, and take the experience as a reward.” That doesn’t mean I was still incredibly nervous, anxious, and having to control and get rid of negative thoughts I was having leading up to it. I just didn’t let those thoughts get the best of me.
Learning how to do a ring muscle up with a ruck on my back was really challenging. I love RMU, but I missed the first one I ever tried with the ruck, and from there, every one when I tested this workout felt like I was just learning how to do muscle ups. The timing of the weight only on your back (not a distributed weight vest) was really throwing me off. I got them down, but then somehow forgot how to do them, and then figured them out again. SO, I was ecstatic when I got to Miami and tried them out with the longer strap rings in the warmup area and they actually felt really good! That workout was TOUGH – just because it was 85 degrees and sunny. MY RMUs weren’t perfect by any means, but I really did **my best** and pushed in other areas that I could (like the squats and running). Unfortunately that workout made me (and the girls I competed with) extremely sore for the rest of the weekend. But it was all worth it to get to experience that hero workout in that environment.
THURSDAY NIGHT was probably my top 3 favorite competition moments of all time… which is weird because it was a sprint elimination event, and I wouldn’t say those are my favorite by any means….Before my heat took the floor (there was a heat before me already on the floor) and they were resetting the bars and all that good stuff….and I could see one side of the stands and see so many people. The lights were awesome. The music was great. And this is going to sound so corny, but I was just so thankful that I had THIS opportunity – an opportunity that so many people would love to have. I could see so many happy people having a great time, and while they weren’t there to watch me necessarily haha… they were still there because fitness is an important part of their lives. But I also knew that I had a husband, a coach, and friends there that were there to watch. Anyway, I’ll never forget that.
And in the workout, I was just thankful to be able to move on to the next round (half the girls were cut after the first round). And then, I was super stoked to make it to the finals (top 10 girls). The 155 bar was tough overhead, and by this time, I was feeling the assault bike from the previous two rounds, so unfortunately I struggled the last round and got 9th. But to be in the finals with Tia and Sarah and Jessica and Amanda and some other girls that I really admire was really cool.
Friday was even better. My legs were trashed, but my spirits were high. There was a rowing event they announced the night before. Personally, I was thinking it was going to be really boring and was surprised they programed that BUT I like to row (shoutout to everyone who has been doing early burn with me the past year) and I remember the crowd actually really getting into it. Anyway, I TRIED not to come out too hot.. but ya know, maybe I did? I got caught a good bit in the last couple of minutes, but I was still happy to get another top 10 finish. I was a little bummed because I wanted to finish the workout, but the pace boat got me with 20 sec to go. This is the one workout looking back where I mean, I gave it my best, but I feel like maybe I had more in the tank, but I just couldn’t turn it on at the end.
FRIDAY NIGHT – PUMP SESH – and it was. I didn’t place anywhere near the top in this workout, but I was really proud of being able to get those rope climbs. Before this workout, I told myself that if I could just NOT fail any of them, it would be a win. I broke it up a lot (like 3 DB thrusters at a time) to try and relax my grip and my forearms. It was the first time I didn’t just blow up on a legless rope climb workout in a comp. I’m still not great at them, but being able to do these at 18 feet has given me the confidence to know I can do them at 15 feet. I def feel like I redeemed myself from the rope climbs at Mayhem. And the coolest part was that I had the same judge here as I did at the Mayhem comp. I wrote all about it here.
Ok, moving on to SATURDAY. Saturday wasn’t the best day by any means. I spilled my entire lunch (a lot of food I was going to force feed myself bc I had no appetite) in the middle of the street outside our airbnb while waiting on an uber driver to come get me and take me to the park. What didn’t spill in the street spilled all in my bag. Dan got me some food though. I gave myself big pep talks about the swim I was about to do. The year before, I had a panic attack in the ocean and don’t even remember doing double unders (or failing double unders) and skiing after getting out of the water. I didn’t want that to happen again. I am not a fan of pistols bc my ankles suck. But I worked really hard on them and I wore my lifters, and truthfully, I do them on my toes anyway (don’t do that) so I prob could have just done them barefoot. I kinda liked the look of lifters + swim suit, so I rocked it. I didn’t smile too much in this workout, but I promise I was having a good time. I was just focusing really hard while doing pistols. No swim suit malfunctions though, so we are good there. The swim ended up being kinda nice actually. I wasn’t fast AT ALL but I didn’t panic. I had a great entrance to the water too.
Well that night, IDK what was wrong with me. But we had this workout called “nine lives.” It was a great workout. Actually, it was two workouts…so two scores. So that really hurt me. I practiced this workout the weekend before WZA. It hurt so bad. My bar was a lot closer to the rig, but I finished both workouts right at 4 min. I felt good about that for me considering my C2B when I’m tired and my overall grip gets fatigued pretty easily. Well, I did my best out there, but I just couldn’t make myself GO. Cycling the light barbell felt awkward and I just couldn’t hold on for my C2B and TTB we had to do every minute. I was pretty bummed after that workout. I was in shock by how bad it felt and how bad I did. I think I just let the lights and the crowd get the best of me. Anddddd. I’ll keep working on those movements too 🙂
SUNDAY (LAST DAY) alright, almost done! We had a heavy deadlift (225 lb) + burpees over the bar sprint. I liked this workout. My HR shot up from like 60 to 180 really fast. It was a big adrenaline rush. I loved being able to do this workout on the tina hills stage. It was really small, and I was mainly concerned about my barbell rolling into the girls on the left and right of me, but it was a good FAST test. I appreciated the big metal plates. And I had to really watch my two foot takeoff because they were really strict about that with us. Tina (right leg) stayed caught up for the most part though, except for a couple of reps where I guess she lagged behind, and I got a couple of no reps.
**The last workout** was Sunday night.. in honor of Jacob Morris, a teenager who lost his life at the end of last year. The story broke my heart, so I actually programmed the workout for a Saturday class at CFEC back in December. I jumped in after class and did it too. However, they really bumped the weights and box height UP, which I loved even more. Give me all the 20 lb wallballs and ski erg and even heavier DB snatches. The 30″ box jumps were a little bit of a struggle for me, but I’ve been doing more of them, so I still stayed moving. It’s funny to admit this now, but I really thought I could go unbroken on the bar muscle ups at the end.. but after 7, I was like nope. Haha. I can laugh about it now, but I still have so much work to do on those. It felt so good to cross that finish line AND HIT THE THROWDOWNS.COM PRECISION TIMING BUTTON for the last time of the weekend.
Anyway, if you’re still reading.. thanks for making it this far. It was a great weekend. I did way better than I thought I would. I smiled more than I thought I would. I was able to stay calm when things got a little out of hand for me. I got to meet some incredible girls and see some old friends too. I had a great time with my friends.
The more of these comps I get to do, the more great people I get to meet (people competing and people there hanging out). The CrossFit community means so much to me. WZA is a great place to be able to celebrate fitness (OF ALL LEVELS, ABILITIES, AND AGES).
Thanks to Colin for coaching me. I did a post all about this here last week. He has given up a good bit of time to help me. It was amazing having a coach in the warmup area. It brought back great mems from regionals 2016 (RIP) where he was back there literally trying to help me confidently snatch 135 lb so I could meet the minimum work requirement and be able to move on in the comp (I did, for the record 🙂 It was the same this time, but it was more about ok, can I actually get a ruck RMU on these longer strap rings, not in our gym? And can I swim without having a panic attack? CFEC is really fortunate to have Colin, but y’all already knew that.
Thanks to Linds for recording ALL of our workouts (mine, Madelines, Daniels, Joshs, Stevens, and Chases). That is a lot of recording to do. She live streamed it so our friends back home could watch since the live stream wasn’t as accessible as past competitions.
Thanks to Daniel for letting me do this, and for supporting me, and for cooking food for me while I compete. I loved getting to watch him compete too . He makes those Born Primitive Jorts look so good. I’m glad we can go on these trips together. I’ll always cherish that.
Shoutout to CFEC for repping in Miami. Madeline did great in the Rx division. Daniel and Josh both got to be on the podium (or if there would have been a podium, they would have been on it) in their division at WZA Strong. Charlie had a good showing in his division for Strong. Chase and Steven both did the Gauntlet and competed Thursday/Friday and both made it to the finals on Sunday. They both made it on to the podiums in their divisions too. All of those people I just mentioned are so fit. Jenna and Laura both snagged VIP passes. Thanks to Jenna for braiding my hair every day. There’s something about one of her braids that makes me feel so strong. And last, but not least… Kate also rocked “team mom” but we all know she is probably fitter than all of us who competed *%$^* (cuss words). And Carrie probably had the most fun out of everyone. I’m glad her and Josh decided to come last minute and braved sleeping on the couch bed of the Airbnb.
But for real.. I know there were really cool CrossFitters for my friends to wait hours in line to get a seat to watch…but the fact that I am one of those people that they would wait HOURS in line just to get a seat to watch me workout means so much. I will never forget that.
So now I am just enjoying life and getting ready to compete in Washington DC at the MACC in April! Daniel and I announced that we are adopting. I’ll post about this soon. It feels good to be able to talk about it now! I have so much to be grateful for. Until next timeeeee!